Fields and Conjunctures: The Thick Opportunity Structure of the Mobilizations

Part of the Critical Political Theory and Radical Practice book series (CPTRP)


Reinterpreting Bourdieu’s theory of social fields for the study of protests, Kumkar analyzes the ‘thick opportunity structures’ in which the Tea Party and Occupy Wall Street unfolded. He shows that those protests have to be understood as emerging from the conjuncture of developments in the USA’ political, economic, and journalistic fields, the crises of which spanned the social space for the protests to develop. The Tea Party, albeit being driven by authentic discontent, remained ultimately bound to the support of actors in the political and economic fields. Occupy Wall Street showed early signs of unfolding in and developing an autonomous realm of practices. However, it was not able to institutionalize this realm of practices in a manner that could render the protests sustainable.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of BremenBremenGermany

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